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Kamome’s Adventures in HO


Kamome

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This weeks mini project was to number the Kato Wamu 80000s. Kato very annoyingly only provide 4 full number options with other individual digits to create your own numbers. The challenge is getting everything lined up if you want to do the latter.. 

 

I also have Wamu 90000s, a Yo 5000 and Tora 45000s which thankfully have numbers of the same size and font. 

So I essentially cut out a 4 number sequence from other wagon numbers and lined them up behind the 28 for the Wamu 80000s to give some variation. 
 

All have been fitted with #58 Kadees and 6 of the 12 have been weathered and had their brake handles and shunting steps painted.

 

I did manage to get around to painting all of their brake pads before i eventually give them some more weathering with the airbrush at a point in the future. I may decide to add some interior detailing but it’s not a priority. Also difficult to find images of these things being loaded.

 

 

 

 

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Thanks @Kiha66

 

It adds a little extra and i noticed that Musashino brass versions have additional parts on the underside painted too. To get to the brake pad, you need to remove the shell and push the wheel housings out. They unclip with a firm push. There’s a thin brass strip which acts as the suspension on each axle. The Toras and 90000s have the same housing but the Toras have to be totally dismantled to get to them. 
 

My plan is to give the underside a airbrush dusting with a suitable brown and then either use powder or an orange brown to replicate brake dust. The colour i used here was actually called “brake dust” from a company in the UK called Railmatch. They produce enamel and acrylic paint for most British outline uses. The colour looks spot on to my eye for well used brake pads. I generally find their colours look great on British stock, but certainly their rail dirt colours are not quite orange or red enough for Japanese underside muck. 

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Started the Herculean task of detailing the 20 series coaches. The detailing is pretty good and I do think for the price point, Kato produce some incredibly good stuff. These are particularly nice but there are a few areas where it is obvious the model needs some updating. 

 

There are hand rails to fit on every door and at the end of each coach. Diaphragms are not fitted from the off but this does allow better access to applying decals to the ends of coaches. There is a wealth of decals to apply and not doing this with a tampo printer obviously reduces the manufacturing cost. It is relatively labour intensive though as each coach end has 4 largish decals to apply as well as some very small door side number details for the perfectionists.

 

Plastic details to fit include door handles, gangway dampeners and diaphragms. The instructions are a bit dated and it takes a couple of passes to understand what goes where on each coach. This is certainly not fully explained when it comes to decals so some photo reference was needed to get everything in the right place. 

 

As mentioned in the new acquisition thread, there are a few areas where it is clear Kato have churned out another run of the old model. This is not a major issue as the model is very good, but some niggles remain for the modern railway modeller wanting convenience which would improve the model in my view. 

 

Firstly, the coupler housings on the Kani 21 and Nahanefu 22 ends are not compatible with kadee couplers like many other coaches. If you add kadees with a kadee gearbox then you’d lose some of the moulded detail unless you decide to butcher the existing parts.  Inter-consist couplers use the same as found on their Kiha 58/82 and 24 series coaches. They couple nice and close with diaphragm parts almost touching. 

 

The inclusion of decals is limited. As with a few of Katos older models, they haven’t supplied enough of the right decals. Named trains has a good selection although in my case, Akebono is not one of them. This is slightly annoying, especially when Katos early EF65-1000 comes with an Akebono head mark. So if you want to model this train, you have to go to a third party to get destination boards and coach headmark to apply. Kato really need to look at producing an added pack for their 20 series, same as they do in N gauge. Another common niggle is the lack of coach numbers. Most of the formation details on Katos website have a minimum of 7 nahane 20s. Kato supply 3 coach numbers for the Nahane.

 

The other issue is for DCC users but this is common across Kato. Decoders would need to be hard wired for this train, same as the Kiha 82. There is plenty of space in toilet ends of coaches so not a huge issue for those wanting to convert. 

 

Sorry this turned into a mini review. They certainly are a very well produced model, i’ve not seen the Tramway coaches to compare against.  Just Kato perhaps need to look at how they can update some of their HO offerings as this has happened a fair bit with their N gauge offerings. I appreciate this is their main market but their HO shouldn’t be overlooked. Price and quality is still what we’ve come to expect from Kato. 

 

I still need to add coach numbers, service names, destination boards, and coach type details to the side of the coaches. I also need to apply coach numbers. I will need to procure some third party parts to do this, but there are at least 12 decals or so to apply to each coach side.

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Edited by Kamome
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Thanks for the review!  They seem to be a nice model out of the box, but take some work to bring them up to fully decorated.  I am disappointed kato didn't include a generic express option or the Sakura mark, and instead kept the same destinations as their original run.

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Despite the delay in production and release,  the result feels a little rushed. As mentioned certainly not a bad model but definitely an incomplete one. You’d have thought they’d have looked at their locomotives and matched the named trains to give customers some options from the off.  Their early type EF65-1000 comes with Izumo, Nihonkai, Seto and Akebono headmarks, none of which are catered for with the Kato 20 series. They do match their EF65-500 though but this hasn’t been produced for some time. I do think their best course of action would be to produce an add-on detail set. The Kiha 82 had one with some alternative train names or picture panels for the headmark. Gives a lot of choices for train options rather than looking elsewhere for details.

Edited by Kamome
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With life taking over much of the hobby time over the last few months, I decided to start some quick jobs on some slightly bigger projects. 

 

This weekend allowed me to start painting details on the Kato JR freight EF65-2000. I feel less precious about these things getting properly weathered and may give me further confidence to weather some slightly more pricey acquisitions in the future. Whoever heard of a factory fresh freight loco.

 

Anyway, I started with the underside and painted the brake pads and other bogie details based on reference material I had.

 

The bogies come apart pretty easily and give great access to the details close to the wheels. They are now waiting for some brake dust with an airbrush and some rail dirt and grime but certainly a good start before I have to turn my sights to the roof and pantos. 

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Thanks Kiha

 

Its actually very easy due to how well the bogie assembly comes apart. The fascia on each side unclip so you have excellent access to the brake pad detail. I just used 2 acrylics, Vallejo neutral grey on the highlighted detail and Railmatch Brake dust colour on the pads. I hope once I airbrush a few tones of brown grime and brake residue, it will come together a bit more and the usual panel line accent in black or dark brown to bring out any missing details. 

Edited by Kamome
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I undertook the  next, larger, stage of EF65 weathering today. Airbrushing is certainly an art that i am still learning.

I probably should’ve started with a wagon but decided to get stuck in. 

There is also a good deal of planning to make sure all the necessary parts get weathered in a similar manner. Despite having a very fine airbrush, I’ve decided to add some details with weathering powders as I still lack the skills to replicate rust and wear effectively. This is especially true when I tried to replicate the wear on the snowplough. 
 

Anyway, wheels were dismantled, along with bogies and given a dusting of Tamiya Nato brown and Railmatch Brake dust by the brake pads. 

 

For the roof I used a combination of Red brown, desert yellow, flat earth and flat black. I’m undecided whether i’m happy with it. This is a generic kind of look. Some look black with grime, others look dusty yellow, others more red. This is something in the middle I guess. 

 

I also gave the coupler body a coat of neutral grey. Looks much better without the plastic sheen.

 

Anyway thoughts welcome. 

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Edited by Kamome
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Cheers @Kamome442

Certainly nice getting praise from an exceptional modeller as yourself.

 

I’ve almost finished this loco or i’ll be in danger of over doing it. The ploughs and skirt were weathered lightly with the airbrush then added the Tamiya weathering master powders, rust and soot from the B set. Just last job is to weather the shiny black coupler and highlight the white footstep guides a little more. 

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After seeing some applied train name stickers for my 20 series coaches last week, the pad printed Kato ones look far superior. So I’ve had a slight change of direction or rather change of service. I’ve added 2 more Nahane 20s into my soon to be dispatched EF58 order.  This will give me a 15 car consist which I’ll probably make into either another Fuji, or Hayabusa or Asakaze. I’m favouring more towards the first 2 as it’ll give my DF50 or ED76 some additional trains to pull. 

 

It seems that the Kato 20 series along with the Tomix Koki 50000s have sold through pretty fast. 

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Decided to crack on with the 20 series details. Each Narone 21 and Nahane 20 needs 12 separately fitted stickers for the service, coach number and whether it’s an A or B sleeping car. As all of the stickers are uncut and require rounded edges, each takes significant patience and a steady hand. Once cut they have been encouraged into the edges of the bevelled recesses with a wooden toothpick. One coach finished and has taken me about 30 minutes to add these details. Well worth the effort but I still need to add running numbers to all 15 and the rest of the stickers to the other 14, 10 of which are Nahane or Narone. I also have 4 newish Nahane still requiring coach end stickers and the DO NOT CLIMB warnings. Certainly plenty to do but it will look very sharp once completed.

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First step to detailing the Zoukei Mura DD54 was to make the cab look a little less plastic. It’s actually quite a nice moulding with some switch, button and dial details and a separately fitted handbrake wheel. There are quite a few images of the cab of the static DD54 at Kyoto railway museum which I used for reference. The base colour isn’t quite the right one but I found mixing a more accurate colour looked a bit too unrealistic, if that makes sense. I toned it down a fair bit but it has sort of lost its blue-green appearance. I used Vallejo acrylic along with the usual wash of thinned Tamiya Panel line accent.

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Posted (edited)

Commenced round two of the DD-Detailing. Cab parts are now back in place with a driver at End 1. Next step: Roof details. 

 

The roof had 27 handrail parts to fit, divided into 4 wide, 20 narrow and 3 unique shaped parts. Holes are pre drilled and in most cases, to the correct size without issue. I found only one of the parts needed some fine tuning. All are painted brass wire and we’ll coated. I didn’t experience any problems with paint scratching off as the parts were applied. The instructions at first glance looked a bit confusing but once parts were in front of me, it was quite clear to decipher which of the 3 unique hand rails were which, where they needed to go and in which direction they needed to point. I must say, the included booklet is very detailed with information about the class and the differences between the 6 variations along with part fitting instructions.  

 

Here it is next its n scale counterpart. You can see how well the roof fans are detailed with plastic fans and metal fan covers. One slight gripe is that the whistle is not metal but plastic. One end was slightly bent and needed glueing back together so it maybe something I replace in future. 

 

Anyway the whole lot took me about an hour. There are still plenty more handrails to attach but it’s certainly starting to look very impressive. 

 

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Edited by Kamome
issue with the image.
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This is a super impressive model!  How do the detail parts attach, I'm always worried about gluing from the outside on such a well detailed model.

 

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disturbman

If they don't fit, a bit of PVA glue won't damage the model. You can wash off any excess with a bit of water.

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Posted (edited)

I use the Tamiya Multipurpose cement clear. It doesn’t string too much although it dries quite quickly so you do waste a fair bit of the blob you’re using. Any over spill can be cleaned up with a toothpick and some alcohol and the glue left dries clear . I believe it is intended for attaching clear parts to models and it doesn’t eat into plastic.  I think it’s a semi permanent glue, also perfect for metal etched manufacturer plates and things can be removed and cleaned up if necessary. 

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Edited by Kamome
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More DD54 updates.

 

The roof details were possibly the most arduous task on this model but i have been really impressed with how well shaped all of the parts are and all have gone into their relevant gaps without issue. 

 

The only area I had to bend the metal parts slightly was on the token protectors mounted on the doors. Thankfully Zoukei Mura include a number of spares of the metal handrails and the token protector is one of the spares although this was a bit hap handedly painted but at least I could use the 4 others.

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Again all were secured in place with the Tamiya MP clear glue and required some minimal clean up around the holes. The wipers and front end handrails required no glue at all. On the subject of wipers, there seems to be a lot of contradiction in the included booklet of which way they go and there are 2 ways shown on various pages, none of which I followed. Sourcing some Google images, I actually contradicted the booklet and followed the photographs, which it seems Kato also did on their N scale version. E313A61E-4C53-44A4-B2A2-BACE728B556F.thumb.jpeg.c9be8ba9fb7e0a194f0e48d5bf1b3ea5.jpeg

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The final job is to add the numbers and maintenance tags as well as shutoff cock markers. Again there seems to be some differences and the book gives an example but states to follow document photos of the actual loco you’re modelling. 

 

One small hiccup, I fixed one end whistle and distress flare and then found that the other end had not bent but snapped off. It seems that the inner clear plastic holder is not great for storing the loco in and has a tendency to bend of snap parts. I will need to source a simple replacement box for this model I think. It feels very much like a scale model rather than a ready to run locomotive, clearly the idea is to have it sitting on rails somewhere instead of putting it away like other RTR locos. Kato boxes are very good at storing their product, but I’ve had some Tomix boxes also keen to try and break off foot steps or other details. DEA8BD06-55FF-499E-9642-5B85CD8D8CB7.thumb.jpeg.85b5bafa6a62a9aebc2474704e297ee9.jpeg

 

As mentioned in the “What did you run today” thread, there are a few details that foul others on the centre wheel arrangement. There looks like some flash from the mould, could be one culprit, or details of the suspension assembly could be another. More testing is required and then the offender will get the chop. A9AE44E9-5052-4262-8F8C-8252D04F3AD8.thumb.jpeg.3d97ae21292e34149ddb3ac69f0d4665.jpeg897DDCEC-3E09-4531-9E6F-3834CD0C867A.thumb.jpeg.a8f58d2dbbcb2d570d74961cfed5a024.jpeg

 

As you can see, some details were also picked out in paint, resembling some weathered model images I had found. 

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So after the removal of a plastic base plate under the model, 4 small screws and 2 clips later, i was able to get a proper look at the centre wheel. The fuel tanks are glued in place which was probably unnecessary and make it a little tighter to get to the screws between them and the driving wheels.D86C7D7B-4520-48A4-A14B-0C9DBEFA4FC0.thumb.jpeg.bd038799d1a5b2fd6c19e6253ed674f4.jpeg

 

On closer inspection, there was actually quite a lot of sprue flash remaining on the part.

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I presume someone was having an off day at the factory or corners were cut to meet a deadline. As the cut marks are hidden under the model it was probably overlooked but in my case it was hindering the locos turning ability. 

 

Anyway a quick pass over with my fine nippers and the notches have been removed. The centre wheel can now move freely. I am impressed how intuitive the model is with all parts having direction arrows as the detail on each side of the centre bogie is different.062330D9-A06F-4932-8EAE-6A55FA0E46FB.thumb.jpeg.41ef45927322148a81e244ebb9a1466e.jpeg

I have now also straightened and reattached the whistle and flare. The whistle is not perfectly straight but better than it was. I see Casco are releasing some boxes for HO locos soon so may need one for this. Echo models and Bonafide do some brass whistles so may get some to replace these eventually. CB48D6FC-E522-48CD-9ECF-0FBAF1A8CEB0.thumb.jpeg.99facdbb0e54ca404f9d459d88e59538.jpeg

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Fine work as always 👍

 

What's the driver up to ? Looks like he's trying to open the window ?

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Either pointing at signals or the Macarena. I was toying with the idea of slicing his arm off and repositioning.  These Noch/Kato drivers are also slightly under scale but I think they are designed for steam engines where the regulator handle would be positioned higher than a throttle lever on a diesel or electric loco.

 

Kato do produce other drivers but they are in Blue Train formal uniform, which would be fine for the Izumo, but i’d rather the general engineering blues. As it’s a general freight/passenger loco i liked this image.

 

https://www.ryoutan.co.jp/news/2017/07/11/011723.html

Edited by Kamome
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Now completed the final stages of detailing. It has taken a while to do everything to the best of my ability and I’m very happy with the results. 

 

I really couldn’t get on with the very thin dry rub decals that Zoukei Mura supply with the model. I tried applying the nose number first and due to the bevel, it applied itself without any pressure. So one wasted, having applied the next one in 2 parts, better and then found the next decal backer picked half of the well applied decal. 

 

Thankfully I still have metal etched numbers left from my Tomix HO locos. 37FEE48B-6651-43D6-8F96-9B7752F84375.thumb.jpeg.58aa4bc296e059c46c3c18749210bd99.jpegThe DF and EDs gave me most of what I needed. The DF50 especially, came with loads of individual numbers which was hugely helpful. I applied some straight masking tape to use as a level guide and actually used my n scale Kato loco for reference in alignment. Some of the numbers lined up exactly with rivets on side grills etc.. which gave a good base for everything else.  For those who don’t have spare numbers available, a company called Treasure Town sell metal etched numbers through Models Imon or Echo Models. The decals and numbers have been properly secured with some semi gloss top coat. Masking off everything but the decals and the top coat sheen matches extremely well. 

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I will now leave her be before I add some panel line detail and may explore  making her more grubby. She’s got a factory fresh look for now though. 

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